Artists must not promote social ills

We can't hail musicians who dish out lyrics that glorify drugs, violence and theft or other things that promote social ills, the writer says.
We can't hail musicians who dish out lyrics that glorify drugs, violence and theft or other things that promote social ills, the writer says.
Image: Gallo Images

Music makes the world go round, goes the dictum.

It has the capacity to have an effect on the character, development or behaviour of those who listen to it, or the effect itself.

It's against these components that musicians should, and must always be, cautious when writing music.

Music is not only about entertainment, it can also be used to inform and educate.

So, artists should be mindful about what they are offering us.

We can't hail musicians who dish out lyrics that glorify drugs, violence and theft or other things that promote social ills.

Recently, music lovers have been bombarded with the Labantwana Ama Uber song by new kids on the music block - a trio from Soweto.

The song has been regarded as a "amapiano smash hit", and it is highly consumed by the youth, despite its dodgy stance on drug culture. Drug abuse is a serious socioeconomic challenge facing many youngsters in SA today.

It is therefore dangerous for a song that glorifies using drugs to be given so much love and attention. We don't have issues with the young trio working hard to uplift their lives and beat the odds of living in the ghetto.

But we cannot condone usage of drugs lifestyle to be a platform of entertainment for the youth.

The fact that the song has come under fire and incurred widespread derision from a section of the music family for glorifying drugs shows that there's something that is not right with the offering.

The trio deny that the song promotes drugs, but already their fans on social media are showing that they have a full understanding of the song's lyrics, hence the dance challenges that show dancers mimicking taking drugs through nostrils.

As we mentioned above, music can touch our souls, it can move us emotionally and give us something to share together and talk about. We can promote the messages the artists are sending out there through their music.

But we must also be seen taking a stand where we feel the emotional welfare of the young is at stake because of questionable lyrics of popular songs.

Children are easily addicted to musical trends and use lyrics as slogans, and this is what we must stop and protect them from.

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